David M. Roth reviews John Zurier: Dust and Troubled Air at Anglim Gilbert, San Francisco, on view through June 10, 2017.
Roth writes: "This sensation of looking at dense fields and then being drawn into irregularly shaped pools of light is unexpected, shocking even, because nothing in the quick-read indicates that possibility. I was also struck by the sheer variety of brushstrokes Zurier uses to achieve these effects. Nowhere are they duplicative; each work appears to have required fresh techniques, invented in the moment of its making. Some, like those in To the Wind, don’t even look like strokes at all; they’re more like gentle exhalations whose cast shadows come into view only at certain angles and then fade as you move from side-to-side. In an age where painters create with an eye toward how their works appear in digital reproduction, Zurier stands out for wrestling with paint the old-fashioned way, both as an intellectual construct and as a literal (albeit vaporous) accretion of highly mutable facts."